Author Archive for Victor

So how much does a website cost?

This is a question I get so often when someone approaches me after knowing what I’m capable of!

So how much does a car cost?

So this is my usual response. Then I hear, ermmm… it depends on the type of car…. Usually after this, my point has been made. So I begin to ask basic questions to better understand the business/organization and what their requirements are.

Here are a few basic questions.

  1. What do you hope to achieve with this website?
  2. Who are the intended audience?
  3. What kind of interactions (feedback, information) do you want to have with the visitors
  4. What’s your budget? Yes, I ask.
  5. What’s your delivery timeline? 

Other questions usually come up from these questions. So by now I have an idea of what kind of ‘car‘ the user wants and I can place a figure on an estimate. 

In general, each project is unique – even when you say ‘e-commerce’. An understanding of what’s required is vital to estimating the cost and delivering the desired result.

Talk to us and let’s get your next project started.

Thanks

Choosing the right blogging platform (or software)

There are a number of options when starting out your blogging career. Call them software or tools. I will do a run-down of the most common ones (assuming you don’t know yet), giving some insights to why you should choose one and not the other.

Blogging Software

There are tonnes of blogging software available on the internet (mostly free). Here is a list starting with the most popular one:

  • WordPress.com (and WordPress.org)
  • Blogger (Blogspot)
  • a  number of often missed platforms (Facebook notes, Google+)
  • some quite common platforms (Tumblr, Typepad, SquareSpace)
  • and a lot of others you might not have heard of and may never hear (Chyrp CMS, b2evolution, Textpattern, NucleusCMS, Geeklog etc)

For this sake of this write up (based on my experience) I will expatiate on the first two.

WordPress.com and WordPress.org

WordPress is the most popular blogging platform in the world, powering almost 19% of the web. WordPress is both a free publishing tool via WordPress.com (e.g. johnbull.wordpress.com, but you can still pay to use your own domain), and a content management system for self-hosted blogs via WordPress.org (hosted on your own server and offers more control).

With a huge library of plugins and themes, WordPress provides a full spectrum of blogging solutions for casual bloggers as well as full-fledged businesses.

While WordPress (or WP) is the best option, you get a lot more juice from it via customization – which can be rewarding. This blog for instance, is powered by WordPress.org.

In my opinion, if you want the most control, use WP on your own servers. WebCreative recommends CityHill Servers.

Blogger

Also called BlogSpot, Blogger is a Google owned blogging platform. Blogger was one of the earliest blogging services and was instrumental in bringing blogging to the mainstream. Blogger is an easy-to-use and free platform that requires only a Gmail/Google account to get started.

Blogger blogs can be customized with new backgrounds and layouts easily. Unsurprisingly, the platform is hardwired into Google’s AdSense advertising program and other Google services like Google+ (for comments) and Feedburner (for RSS distribution) are easily configured.

If you already have ideas and want to get started immediately, try blogger. You can be up and running yourownblog.blogspot.com in no time with no tech knowledge.

Conclusion

At the end, it boils down to what you (and your readers) are most comfortable with and what can easily communicate your message. I know a couple of friends who simply use Facebook notes and their message is passed across and everyone is happy.

Quick Check

  • Choose your topic/niche
  • Choose a suitable platform
  • Start Blogging

Questions? Feel free to comment.

Thank you

3 tips for blogging in the Holiday Season

During the festive season, your loyal readership is distracted by Christmas and all the associated fun and stress. Usually your blog posts are a welcome relief from the everyday slog that is the working week, but now that the holidays are here, your reader’s priorities have changed. WebCreative offers 3 tips for blogging in holiday.

People are in a celebrating, reflective or planning mood or a combination of these. The old year is rolling out and they are projecting for the new year. To compensate for the changes in attitudes over the holiday season, you should change your blog.

1. Offer Seasonal Tips and Advice

No matter what your website is about, there is always a way to integrate the festive season into it. You should look for seasonal related tips and advice that you can give related to your blog’s niche. Even if your blog is on the topic of precious metals, you can write posts about how the winter frost may make some metals more brittle, explain how many reindeer a sheet of precious metal can hold. Some blog niches are easier to convert into seasonal themes, such as cookery blogs and decorating blogs.

You can equally give discount offers on your products/services for the forthcoming year.

2. Give Your Readers Less to Read

This season can be very busy for lots of people. You do not want to bore your readers with a long detailed post – while its holiday. It’s best to go straight to the point (possibly use pictures to illustrate), lighten the tone and make your post an exciting read.

While generally, short blog posts do not help your search engine optimization, occasions like this (holiday seasons) can be an exception to that rule.

If people log on to look at your blog post then they are probably not going to be in the mood to read a weighty post, so make it a short and sweet one.

3. Prepare Seasonal Messages for Your Social Networking Channels

The social networks are so interactive that just a few seasonal messages can stimulate a massive response. Prepare a few seasonal messages for Twitter and Facebook – and add your thought for the day, and your response rate will be higher than ever as people clamber to send their season’s greetings back to you. If you create a few messages that are a little more poignant than the usual “Merry Christmas” message then you will find that you get a far larger response.

Bonus Tip

Most of all – don’t forget to take some time off for yourself. Running a blog is really hard work – so it’s good to have some time to relax with the family and take some time away from the computer.

Season’s Greetings from WebCreative Nigeria.